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FEATURE

The Race is On as Cisco Systems and Renault Win Murai Award for Innovative Mobile IPv6 e-Vehicle

IPv6 News and Events: Moonv6 Media Page About the "Networks in Motion" Initiative Public Safety Networks in Motion About IPv6 IPv6 (Internet Protocol Version 6 or IP Next Generation) is the latest evolution of the Internet Protocol and is now included as part of IP support in many products and operating systems. The most dramatic improvement in IPv6 over previous IP protocols is that IP addresses can expand from 32 to 128 bits, which accommodates future Internet growth. In May 2003, the availability of Cisco IOS 12.3 Mainline that integrates the main IPv6 feature set, followed by IOS 12.3T and 12.2S enables production deployment for all Cisco based networks. With advanced functionality such as Multi-Topology IS-IS for IPv6, IPv6 Provider Edge over MPLS (6PE) support and Broadband Access feature set for IPv6 as part of its offering, Cisco delivers the industry's most mature IPv6 solution. This solution now enables large-scale deployment of applications such as peer-to-peer and home networking services, which require the universal addressing capability of IPv6.

October 20, 2003

By Terry Moos, News@Cisco

"... As the driver rounds the next curve of the expressway, he checks the off-road navigation system, searches the Web for event notification, and uses the remote diagnostics feature to analyze a problem - all from within his vehicle..."

Another James Bond adventure? Not quite, but it is what happens when you pair the world's leading-edge Internet technology with one of Europe's high performance automobiles. The Cisco Systems Technology Center and Renault Prospect & Research Division teamed on a revolutionary IPv6 e-Vehicle project, equipping a Renault Laguna 2 car with a router and a set of emergent applications - such as vehicle remote diagnostic, centralized support, and off-road navigation system - easily enabled by IP technologies.

Not only does the IP-connected Laguna 2 car showcase inventive mobile network technology at work - it also highlights the value and convenience that Mobile IPv6 technology can bring to the lives of many people. In a broader sense, this is the first step toward a seamless integration of IP technology with multiple wireless transmission. It potentially represents a set of new markets such as defense and homeland security, wireless systems, public safety systems, public transportation systems, enterprise mobile workforce, and the consumer area within private vehicles.

IPv6 e-Vehicle project honored with Murai Award for innovative mobile technology

Validation on the road started in June 2003, and so far, the project is getting noticed. The IPv6 e-Vehicle research project recently received the Murai Award for innovative mobile technology from Jun Murai, the IPv6 Promotion Council Chairman and Keio University Professor. This award highlights the joint development by Cisco Systems and Renault Prospect & Research Division to enable a vehicle with IPv6 mobile connectivity and multiple applications, including:

  • End user/passenger Internet access.
  • Wireless connectivity within the vehicle to connect PDA and other wireless devices.
  • Wireless connectivity from the vehicle to infrastructures such as WiFi, GSM data, GPRS, while accommodating future radio systems.
  • In-vehicle diagnostic system: IP-enabling the alarm and general purpose diagnostic environment, allowing a central support center to monitor and initiate actions remotely.
  • Enhanced fleet management system based on "always-on, always reachable" concepts.
  • GPS localization system carried and integrated onto the IP infrastructure, for enhanced real-time services based on actual position.

Since cars are becoming more complex with their own computer systems, the concept of mobile routing is evolving. The IPv6 e-Vehicle research project was developed around a compact integrated Cisco Systems 3200 Mobile Access Router running the most recent IPv6 mobile networking developments, an IP-enabled mobility infrastructure, and the Renault mobile applications. These technologies allow for using bi-directional and interactive IPv6 and IPv4 applications - anywhere from a moving vehicle. The embedded router is integrated in the Renault architecture, as the main communication node for the telematic applications in the car. The server-side infrastructure is enriched with dedicated equipment.

What's down the road?

Cisco Systems and the Renault Prospect & Research Division continue to explore solutions for mobile drivers, with shared visions of "always connected-always reachable," and "continuity of service" for users. The Cisco 3200 Mobile Access Router used in the IPv6 e-Vehicle project is also used in a variety of industries such as defense, public safety, government offices, local governments, railways and airlines, and is integrated into commercial vehicles, aircraft, satellites, trains and ships, linking with Cisco mobile IP networks to bring about mobility of networks that was not previously possible.

Applications like remote-diagnosis, safety, event notification, navigation and fleet management will become more important -- with integrated information, video and audio on a single infrastructure delivering quickly. The benefit is that eventually, mobile users can build a mobile infrastructure and networks, instead of requiring separate radio links for each wireless device used. Instead, all devices (PCs, PDAs, cellular phones, pages, and other portable devices) will be connected over a local - mobile -network, which will be one of the many demands on IP address space in the future. IPv6 is the only viable solution to have truly unique identification for an IP-enabled e-vehicle.

The collaborative project of Cisco Systems and Renault Prospect & Research Division is truly where the roadway meets the information superhighway - with transparency of the system to multiple radio systems and the constant reachability of the end user.

Terry Moos is a freelance writer based in Seattle, Wash.

 
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